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Police continue investigation of Modi'in Illit rape
By BEN HARTMAN AND MELANIE LIDMAN
07/02/2013
Despite the main complainant's claims she made up rape of 5-year-old girl, police say investigation remains ongoing.
 
An investigation into a child rape allegation in the haredi (ultra-Orthodox) town of Modi’in Illit is still under way despite the main complainant having withdrawn her allegations in a television interview on Wednesday.

The kindergarten supervisor who made the complaint to police last week told Channel 2 that she had made up the story, saying, “I blew it out of proportion and made up a story that, in essence, specifically in that place, did not happen.”

With her voice and face obscured, the woman said that she had made the false complaint because the city did not treat rape complaints properly, and that her act was her way of “shocking the system” so the city would begin to look into such cases.

An official with the Judea and Samaria Police told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday that the interview had had no effect on the investigation, which was still open.

Police were still interviewing community leaders, local residents and religious officials, the official said, but so far had not been able to find the suspect or the five-year-old girl who was allegedly raped in the incident.

The official added that the supervisor was still the key to the entire case, because she was the one who had purportedly treated the girl after the incident and made the initial complaint. She was called in for questioning on Thursday after the Channel 2 interview, but did not appear, sending her attorney to tell police she was not feeling well.

According to the official, police are familiar with the sensitivity of such cases for the haredi community and have taken such issues into consideration.

Once the case went public on Tuesday, media reports presented it as a sort of cover-up, in that the complaint was made to police only about two weeks after the girl first reported it to the educator. Judea and Samaria Police said they had only begun their initial investigation after a reporter asked them about the case.

Also on Thursday, Jerusalem District Police announced the Wednesday arrest of a man accused of sexually assaulting an 11-year-old girl from the country’s Center who had been staying in Jerusalem.

Police said the man had been undergoing therapy for the issue, paid for by the haredi community to discourage victims’ families from complaining to police.

Jerusalem Post staff contributed to this report.
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